Carmen Perrin

This group of works by Carmen Perrin reveals the artist’s extraordinary ability to synthesize, on the one hand, her established directions (Conceptual art, arte povera, and post-Minimalism), and on the other, her ability to meld a complex cultural dualism—Swiss and Latin American—into a compelling cohesion that is as sophisticated as it is simple.

The title of each piece is a straightforward listing of the materials used in the work’s creation: they include slate, stone, wood, ferrous and non-ferrous metals, cement, fiberglass, and plastic. In most cases, the materials maintain their industrial character. Formally, the pieces are dynamic—they almost seem to undulate. Nevertheless, these structures don’t seem to betray any particular anxiety, but rather to play poetically on the natural communion between feeling, intellect, and material. The pieces are built in situ; they always maintain a relatively reductive character, and they are constructed in such a way that they are given neither a monumental nor a totemic dimension. This same process endows them with a formalist identity in that they are connected to a particular and unique moment, like events suspended in time.

Tension is the dominant element in Perrin’s work. It exists in the counterpoint of materials and forms, as well as in the energies that act on them. These three elements are interwoven so that no single one dominates. In this sense, Perrin allies herself with Alberto Giacometti’s miniature surrealist scenarios and Oskar Schlemmer’s triadic dances. The artist herself admits an absolute absence of premeditation. The works come out of a spontaneous sense of possibility and desire.

Perrin integrates her work within a corpuscular and cinematic continuum of material, with the perfect acknowledgment that there are more similarities than differences between an elemental particle and a work of art or a text. The totality that she affects and by which she is affected basically consists of information and desire. Desire means possible interference and, subsequently, a rich heterogeneity and fertile chaos. The perfection of Perrin’s work consists in the conversion of the fundamental entropism of nature into a paradox.

Gloria Moure

Translated from the Spanish by Hanna Hannah